The Pope has outlined his vision for the future of the Catholic Church, call for powers to be stripped from the Vatican, although he ruled out allowing women priests. Pope Francis has called for power in the Catholic Church to be devolved…
In an editorial published Monday, a prominent Catholic newspaper endorsed a movement to ordain women priests. Calling the priesthood a “gift from God … rooted in baptism,” the National Catholic Reporter says that “barring women from ordination to the priesthood is an injustice that cannot be allowed to stand.” The Missouri-based newspaper’s editorial pits it directly against the Vatican, where church leadership have strongly rejected any possibility of women being ordained, even as a small pro-ordination movement has grown and independently ordained several women in recent years.
On Sunday, Jan. 25, 1959, John (less than three months after becoming pope) proclaimed it was time to drag the church out of the Dark Ages and into the modern world. It was time, he said, to open the stained-glass windows and let in some fresh air. The proclamation shocked Catholics, who were unused to seeing change in a more than 1,900-year-old patriarchy steeped in tradition. Some were skeptical. Others embraced it. But what difference did Vatican II make?
Is religious unity a dream that can never be fulfilled? Can it never be a reality? I feel that it can be. This does not mean that all religions should be merged into some spiritual hodgepodge. But if we are mature enough to see the purpose of each religion or spiritual path, we will recognize that there is very little difference between them. Once we get past the superficialities and variations, and there can be a lot of that, like dress, language, rituals, diet, or architectural styles of churches or temples, or feelings of superiority, we can see that the essential purpose of each religion is the same. That is to pray to God, sing His praises, discuss His pastimes and instructions, study the guidance of the prophets or messengers of God, and to think of God or meditate on Him in any number of ways. The process is the same, summarized as hearing about God, chanting or singing about Him, and remembering and serving God. That’s it. Anything else is an expansion of these items. The goal is the same: To learn how to surrender to God and love Him with all our hearts and minds, and then to treat and love others as parts and parcels of God. Simple. Why do we gather at temples, churches or mosques? Simply to learn and practice how to do this, and associate with others who wish to do the same. Thereby we all help each other in this direction.